The Health Unit is mandated to enforce the Smoke-Free Ontario Act, 2017, within its jurisdiction.
The Act is the legislative centrepiece of the provincial Smoke-Free Ontario Strategy.
Under the Smoke-Free Ontario Act, 2017, you cannot smoke or hold lighted tobacco, cannabis, or use e-cigarettes:
- in enclosed workplaces (this includes work vehicles),
- in enclosed public places,
- in designated outdoor spaces,
- in a vehicle with children under the age of 16,
- around all children's playgrounds (and public areas that fall within 20 metres of the playground),
- on publicly owned sporting areas and spectator areas (and public areas that fall within 20 metres of these areas),
- on restaurant and bar patios, whether covered or not, and within 9-metres of the bar or restaurant patio,
- within 9 metres of entrances/exits of long-term care homes,
- on hospital property,
- in common areas of apartment buildings,
- within 20-metres of school property, or
- within 20-metres of a community recreational facility property.
The Act also institutes measures to ensure compliance with these prohibitions. Every employer/owner of an enclosed workplace/public place must:
- ensure compliance of the legislation
- notify employees that smoking is not allowed
- post signs (including in washrooms)
- remove all ashtrays or similar equipment
- ensure employees who do not comply leave the enclosed workplace
Furthermore, if an employee seeks enforcement of this Act, no employer/owner can:
- dismiss or threaten the employee
- discipline or suspend the employee or threaten to do so
- impose a penalty on the employee
- intimidate or coerce the employee
As of October 17th, 2018 cannabis cannot be consumed (smoked, vaped, eaten) in a vehicle or boat that is being driven or is at risk of being put into motion.
The Act also bans the public display of tobacco and vapour products, and the promotion of tobacco products, (other than in speciality vape stores and tobacconists) and the sale of tobacco and vapour products to youth under 19 years of age.
If you have a question about the Act or would like to forward information regarding an offence under the Act, email our Tobacco Talk Line or call us at (613) 966-5513 or 1-800-267-2803, ext. 600.
TTY: (613) 966-3036 (Monday to Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.)